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Super Glue inventor dies aged 94

Harry Wesley Coover Jr, known as the inventor of Super Glue, has died at age 94.

Mr Coover was working for Tennessee Eastman Company, a division of Eastman Kodak, when an accident helped lead to the popular adhesive being discovered, according to his grandson, Adam Paul of South Carolina.

An assistant was distressed that some brand new refractometer prisms were ruined when they were glued together by the substance.

In 1951, Mr Coover and another researcher recognised the potential for the strong adhesive, and it was first sold in 1958, according to the Super Glue Corp's website.

Cyanoacrylate, the chemical name for the glue, was first uncovered in 1942 in a search for materials to make clear plastic gun sights for the Second World War. But the compound stuck to everything, which is why it was rejected by researchers, the website said.

President Barack Obama honoured Mr Coover in 2010 with the National Medal of Technology and Innovation.

Mr Coover and the team of chemists he worked with became prolific patent holders, achieving more than 460. The work included polymers, organophosphate chemistry, the gasification of coal and of course, cyanoacrylate.

The Industrial Research Institute, for which he served as president in 1982, honoured Mr Coover with a gold medal and the US Patent Office inducted him into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in Akron, Ohio in 2004.


From Belfast Telegraph